Let's face it: Clogging requires STUFF. Stuff you need to carry and keep organized. Stuff you want to have at the ready without thinking about it.
Over time, most cloggers will accumulate a personal set of essentials to keep in the clogging bag. I actually have TWO clogging bags, depending on the situation.
The first bag goes to practice and shows at local festivals or community events where we are wearing jeans and a team tee shirt instead of clogging dresses. It's roomy, yet easy to carry and has a cool print of roller skates and disco balls on it. What's not to love?!
The second clogging bag travels to workshops, competitions, and shows which require more elaborate costumes. It is a sturdier, larger duffel-type bag (freebie from work several years ago). It has multiple zippered compartments and can be tossed around without losing any items.
Contents of my clogging practice bag
If you forget EVERYTHING else, be sure to have these! That whole lack of noise thing can put a damper on your practice and performance.
Because falling on your butt is not good. There are no dances in our current repertoire which require me to fall to the ground. Not on count 5, 6, 7, or 8.
If you aren't thirsty, you didn't dance hard enough. Try it again, but with higher knees this time...
May not be necessary for everyone. I, however, am a sweaty gross mess after the first dance.
These live in a 3-ring binder, ready for reference if needed.
Extra hair tie
If your hair is long enough to be pulled back, keep one of these handy. Mine is looped through the zipper pull on the inside pocket of the bag so it won't get lost.
Blisters are no fun, either. Go ahead and throw a few band-aids in the bag.
Because my knees aren't getting any younger! (Obviously, not appropriate for a child's clogging bag.)
In case you show up to class wearing shoes that don't require socks or (more likely for me) wearing snow boots with heavy socks you would prefer not to wear with clogging shoes.
Emergency stash of feminine hygiene products
I trust no further explanation is necessary.
Contents of my casual show bag
(Not much changes between practice and casual shows.)
Everything stays in the practice bag, with the exception of the cue sheet binder.
Because you've probably danced at your fair share of events with poorly stocked porta potties! (No, I don't carry TP to all shows; just the ones where porta potties will be the only option.)
Something else to drink
For those scorching hot shows in summer, water is not always enough.
Wallet and keys
If you don't want to carry a purse in addition to the clogging bag.
Extra clogging shoes
Those of us who no longer outgrow clogging shoes eventually end up with a pair that doesn't look pretty, but can still be serviceable in a pinch.
These shoes become my practice shoes, but I continue to carry them in the performance bag in case the team ends up dancing on a surface that makes me hesitate to use "show" shoes. Plus, you never know when you might break a tap!
Contents of my formal show/competition bag
Everything from the practice bag, minus cue sheets, plus anything applicable from the casual show bag. (Actual costumes are kept in a separate garment bag.)
I've learned to purchase pantyhose online in larger quantities to avoid rushing around multiple stores, hoping to find the correct size/color. You can read a previous post about my pantyhose shopping adventures HERE.
Various supplies to fix hair/wardrobe malfunctions
Safety pins, bobby pins, stick-on Velcro tabs (These are great, by the way!), stain remover pen, clear nail polish, wrinkle release spray, shoe polish.
Because the wrong color spankies are still WAY better than no spankies at all!
Team earrings, belts, etc.
Make up and hair products
Because I don't wake up lookin' pretty!
A non-messy snack
Competitions can run quite late and the venue snack bar never stays open until the end. I keep a granola bar or something similar stashed in the bag.
Packing your bags for competition can be stressful. You can read my post about packing for the Bristol competition HERE.
I'm open to suggestions if you have other items to consider for the clogging bag!
What's in YOUR clogging bag? What is the strangest item you've kept in your clogging bag?